Shelton Pacific is a small wood company specializing in highly figured stabilized Koa (one of the most beautiful woods in the world), stabilized figured maple (curly, tiger stripe, burl and spalted), stabilized figured mango, Shokwood (hybrid wood and colored polymer) and carbonfiber scales. We occasionally have other stabilized figured domestic woods that we come across in our area.
Shelton Pacific has been providing custom knife makers with beautifully stabilized figured woods for several years. Many of our pieces have been used by custom knife makers for their Junior Smith and Master Smith qualifications and others whose work has been featured in both Blade and Knife Illustrated magazines.
Knife handle materials (wood, bone or antler to name a few) are stabilized to make them more durable than their natural counterparts. But the ultimate benefit is that movement due to heat, cold and moisture is nearly eliminated. Ultimately this helps to prevent the handle material you put on that special knife from warping of cracking after gluing and pinning. This process will make a soft wood harder and a hard wood even harder.
Wood that is stabilized for knife handle material is impregnated with liquid polymer materials that penetrate the wood grain and fibers and then catalyzed so that it becomes solid. In the stabilizing process the polymers, due to vacuum and then high pressure, moves into the wood and fills and/or coats the cellular structure and can seal hairline cracks. When the stabilization process is performed correctly the polymer penetrates through and through so there will be no interior surface that is not protected.
Of the wood we offer at Shelton Pacific, 99% has been polymer stabilized. We have our wood professionally stabilized by either WSSI (Wood Stabilizing Specialists, Int'l) or K&G (Knife & Gun Finishing Supply). These two companies are the old timers when it comes to stabilizing wood specifically for use on knives.